Verizon's $399 Price Tag Of The Palm 755p Is Out Of Touch With Reality - InformationWeek
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12/17/2007
01:10 PM
Eric Ogren
Eric Ogren
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Verizon's $399 Price Tag Of The Palm 755p Is Out Of Touch With Reality

Has Verizon Wireless looked at the competition lately? Almost every smartphone in its own roster of devices is hundreds of dollars cheaper than the newly launched 755p. Sprint sells the same phone for $249. Why on earth does Verizon think people will be dumb enough to pay $399 for a tired device like t

Has Verizon Wireless looked at the competition lately? Almost every smartphone in its own roster of devices is hundreds of dollars cheaper than the newly launched 755p. Sprint sells the same phone for $249. Why on earth does Verizon think people will be dumb enough to pay $399 for a tired device like the 755p?All the latest and greatest, sexiest and smartest smartphones are going for $199 and less these days. That includes hits such as the BlackBerry Pearl, the Motorola Q9m and Q9h Global, Samsung's BlackJack and BlackJack II. The list goes on and on. Many of them offer the newest tech specs, with solid cameras, fast wireless data, GPS services, and the newest versions of Windows or other operating systems. Not to mention svelte waistlines.

Palm and Verizon Wireless announced the delayed launch of the 755p today. After rebate, the price will be $399, though it does say some customers will qualify for a sale price of $299. But even $299 is way more than this phone is worth.

First off, it represents at most an incremental improvement over the 700p. So it slims up by 1mm, and loses the antenna. Big deal. Its biggest failing is that it is still glued to the Palm Garnet-based OS, which has not progressed forward in years.

Second, it has only a 1.3-megapixel camera (much of the competition has 2 megapixels or higher), it doesn't support stereo Bluetooth (as does most of the competition), it is crippled by Palm's Blazer browser (others have IE or Opera), it doesn't have Wi-Fi (as does a growing percentage of the competition), and it is huge!

Let's take a quick look at the competition for comparison's sake. These are the prices available to people who purchase the following PDAs/smartphones from Verizon Wireless over the Internet and qualify for all the listed rebates.

Verizon's PDAs:

BlackBerry 7130e: $99 BlackBerry 8130 Pearl: $149 BlackBerry 8830: $199 Motorola Q: $99 Motorola Q9m: $149 Samsung SCH-i760: $299 Treo 700p: $249 Treo 700wrx: $249

The Treo 755p cost more than all of them but the Samsung, which costs the same. Keep in mind this is just Verizon's list. AT&T, Sprint, and T-Mobile offer many of the same phones in the same price range, i.e., $199 or less.

Does the Palm OS-based 755p offer some things that these others don't? Yes. Palm's easy-to-use platform. But that's about it at this point. Access to third-party applications is probably equally good between the Palm, BlackBerry, and Windows Mobile operating systems. Browsing will be better on the other phones, and so is media integration.

Speaking of media integration. The iPhone also costs $399. It may not offer EV-DO wireless data speeds, but it offers way more user memory, a better browser, better camera, Wi-Fi, and much better media playback. Sure it isn't compatible with thousands of third-party applications...yet. But think about what users are getting for their money.

Seriously, Verizon. Please reconsider the pricing model you have in place for this phone.

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